Next week subscribers to the PLI Plus platform will discover that all United States federal and state case law citations are linking to Fastcase documents as the result of a new alliance between the Practicing Law Institute (PLI) and Fastcase.
The Practicing Law Institute which developed the PLI Plus platform, is one of the premier CLE providers in the United States. The new Fastcase linking feature will be available in all the PLI course handbooks, treatises and journals on the platform at no additional cost to PLI Plus subscribers.
In December 2017, PLI announced that they were not renewing their agreement with Bloomberg Law. That alliance had given PLI Plus subscribers access to primary law such as cases from Bloomberg. Bloomberg was able to offer subscribers access to a library of selected secondary source materials from PLI. At that time I speculated that it would make sense for PLI to consider an alliance with one of the innovative “upstart” companies which offer primary law such as Fastcase or Casetext.
I spoke to Craig Miller, the VP of Membership at PLI who provided me with this comment on the alliance. “We are glad to partner with a progressive, cutting edge company like Fastcase to enhance value to PLI’s members and subscriber with access to primary law.” Miller also noted that during 2019 they will also begin adding “Fastcase enabled” links to statutes and regulations which appear in PLI Plus resources. PLI Plus subscribers will not get full access to all Fastcase resources. Their access will be limited to retrieving the full text documents related to each individual link. Providing direct access to the primary sources streamlines the research experience by allowing researchers to move seamlessly from secondary to primary source content and back again as needed in the research process.
The current PLI/Fastcase alliance will not extend to making PLI secondary source content available on Fastcase —at this time. However, I would not be surprised if this relationship moved in that direction. I recently wrote a blogpost exploring Fastcase’s evolution from a low cost caselaw service into a “full service” research and workflow platform. An important piece of that development has been the forging of alliances with Hein Online, Lexblog and Wolters Kluwer to add treatises and commentary as well as developing their own Fastcase imprint “Full Court Press.”
Congratulations to PLI and Fastcase. I can already hear the PLI Plus subscribers cheering when they click on their first “live link” to a Fastcase document.